Issue: December 2023/January 2024

HMLR – PG19

December 2023/January 2024 | Conveyancing

HMLR has updated PG19 (notices and restrictions). Clarification has been added for altering and modifying a restriction (Sections 3.8 and 3.9). The guide now details the circumstances in which restrictions can be altered and sets out the powers of the registrar in making modifications. Section 3.8 now reads: ‘Applications to alter a restriction Sometimes it …

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Public law – late amends to threshold document

December 2023/January 2024 | Family

The CA rejected M’s appeal against decisions that the threshold criteria for public law orders under s31 CA 1989 were satisfied, and of an SGO in favour of her son’s maternal uncle, M’s brother and his partner. M argued that the proceedings were unfair as she did not have a fair opportunity to respond to …

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Freehold estates – guidance

December 2023/January 2024 | Conveyancing

The government has produced guidance on freehold estates, which conveyancers may find of interest and may wish to bring to their clients’ attention. The guidance provides information on freehold estates which are private and mixed tenure estates where shared areas are not owned or looked after by the local council.​ The guidance refers to estate …

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Name change – opposition

December 2023/January 2024 | Family

This was an unusual case where the LA applied to change the forename of an eight-month-old boy (C) in its care on the basis that his registered name, Mia, was stereotypically female. M opposed the application, though she was not engaging in the care proceedings themselves. There were two strands of opposition to C’s forename …

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CMA – freehold estates

December 2023/January 2024 | Conveyancing

Conveyancers may be interested to note that the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has published the first in a series of ‘working papers’ which seeks feedback on potential solutions to problems with new-build estate management and the charges households are required to pay. Options set out in the working paper, which the CMA is currently …

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HMCTS online portal – new features and guidance

December 2023/January 2024 | Family

Two new features have been added to the HMCTS online portals in recent weeks to reflect new divorce laws: HMCTS contested financial remedy online portal: guidance for new functionality permitting interveners to use the online service and updated guidance – New guidance (Managing an intervener) feature has been published alongside the new feature. Online divorce …

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Legal aid – refusing work

December 2023/January 2024 | Crime

The reduction in legal aid funding means many solicitors are increasingly required to undertake work that is unremunerated or loss-making. If you undertake publicly funded criminal work, you can refuse to take a case, but it can carry a regulatory risk if you’re not careful. A new Law Society practice note has been published setting …

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Variation of maintenance order – change in circumstances

December 2023/January 2024 | Family

A cohabitee’s financial role is more properly understood as a change in resources for the party following the date of the original order, the court has ruled. H was therefore entitled to argue a change in circumstances since the original maintenance order of 2019 – and notwithstanding a subsequent variation of the order. At the …

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Sentencing – informers

December 2023/January 2024 | Crime

There is a long-established practice of reducing the sentence which would otherwise have been imposed on an offender, to reflect that they have provided information and assistance to the police. The justification for doing so is purely pragmatic; the public interest in rewarding such assistance to the authorities and protecting sources has long been recognised. …

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Decree nisi – rescission after reconciliation

December 2023/January 2024 | Family

In an unusual move, the CA set aside the trial judge’s key finding that there had been no reconciliation between H and W, who had in fact cohabited for several years post-decree nisi. The parties separated after a year of marriage and a decree nisi was granted following W’s divorce petition. A consent order was …

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